|November 6, 2009|
|10 Bad Things About the Nov. 7 PRSA Assembly|
|By Jack O'Dwyer|
|Here are ten reasons why the Assembly tomorrow shapes up as a travesty almost no matter what happens.|
1. An entire year and untold thousands of dollars have been spent on wrangling over legalisms to the total neglect of needed "PR for PR."
2. Parliamentarians advise that "revisions" not be done at the regular meeting of an assembly but only in a series of meetings. Society leaders have defied this common sense advice.
3. Proxy votes will probably be used in defiance of the No. 1 rule in Robert's Rules and deliberative bodies worldwide: Be There or Don’t Vote. Use of proxies will open the Society to claims that all votes using proxies are “null and void.”
4. Assembly delegates are mostly ignorant of Robert's, which says boards should be "subordinate" to assemblies such as the Society's. The opposite is true at PRSA, but who has the guts to assert this?
5. The bylaws task force was a task farce -- with 10 of the 11 self-selected members being APR (when less than 20% of members are). The group did not represent the membership.
6. The usual hour and a half is set aside for "lunch" -- a hoary time-wasting trick of leaders. A box lunch and 30 minutes would be logical.
7. Chair Mike Cherenson and even parliamentarian Colette Trohan have advised against audiocasting the Assembly which would be cheap and easy. The Society turns its back on modern communications tools.
8. Leaders will not be on a stage looking down on delegates this year but delegates should elect their own "chair" who should run the meeting (copying ABA, AMA, AICPA, APA, etc.).
9. Cherenson has failed to correct his incorrect statements about audiocasting the Assembly being "near impossible, technologically challenging." PRSA's Ethics Code calls for "prompt" corrections.
10. Indefensible is the failure of staff/leaders to supply IRS Form 990 to members and delegates, withholding this important financial information until after the Assembly. Society financial reports are late and skimpy.
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